4 Popular New Year’s Resolutions For Gen Z In 2023

As we start the new year, Gen Zers are, predictably, upturning the idea of traditional New Year’s resolutions. ‘Goals’ and ‘wishes’ are the new terminology, and many are opting for smaller, achievable goals to help them improve throughout the year as opposed to setting overwhelming, unreachable goals in the short-term. 

And how are these goals being recorded? Social media and vision boards, of course. Young people are manifesting their dream lifestyle using Pinterest (a Voxburner 2022 survey revealed that 43% of UK and 54% of US Gen Z students use the app) and sharing their wishes on TikTok. Key categories include health, lifestyle and finance, but what are the popular ‘resolutions’ amongst this generation and why will these be impacting brands’ relationships with Gen Z consumers in 2023?

1. Prioritising themselves and their mental health

A 2022 survey by Forbes revealed that the generation most concerned with mental health is Gen Z, so it’s no surprise that 50% of this generation are planning to work towards improving their mental wellbeing in 2023. ‘Not disturbing your peace’ – i.e. knowing your personal worth – is the theme for this year, with young people resolving to prioritse healthy friendships, ditch toxic friends and work to improve relationships. 

Friends hanging out in Central London

Whilst physical fitness has been a recurring theme in recent years, Gen Zers are finally pushing back, taking to online spaces to discuss the detrimental impact this has had on them over the years. Of course, physical and mental health are intrinsically linked, but this year’s focus amongst young people is on exercising (in your own time, in your own way) in order to feel mentally at your best. A search of ‘2023 new year’s resolutions’ on TikTok shows a surprising lack of fitness related posts; in fact, fitness influencers are taking to their socials to fight back against unrealistic, unhealthy and damaging New Year’s resolutions. As fitness guru Emily Thorne shared on her Instagram, ‘This for me is my busiest time of year since I’ll be working overtime to try and fight through this crap…’. 

Why is this important for you?

Gen Z are prioritising stepping back from the ‘achieve, achieve, achieve’ mindset and will value the brands who encourage them to be themselves. By taking things slowly and not enforcing the ‘new year, new me’ attitude, young shoppers are more likely to favour you in the long-term, and not just for an intense, unsustainable and exhausting January.

2. Cheap and easy sustainability

We know that Gen Z value sustainability, but a new year provides opportunity for a reset and refocus. Social media, particularly TikTok, has become a hub for content creators to educate TikTokers on sustainable practices for 2023, whilst eager young people are taking to the comments section to share tips, ask questions and interact with the creators/other viewers. Popular tips for 2023 sustainability amongst Gen Z are ones which are simple, easy and cheap, including composting, using reusable bags and buying books secondhand.For many young people, this drive is connected to saving money, which is more important that ever before due to the rising cost-of-living. Reusable water bottles, coffee pods and beeswax wraps are all suggestions that appeal to Gen Z’s altruistic nature and keep their bank balances happy.

Why is this important for you?

If young people are upping their efforts to be more environmentally friendly in 2023, they’re expecting you to, too. To quote vegan TikToker Maria, ‘[I’m] switching to reusables from sustainable companies, I’m not supporting [companies with high carbon emissions] with my dollar’. In other words, expect to see young people investing their money in the brands that make a positive difference in the world, favouring those who make sustainable practices a priority.

3. Less screen time to make room for hobbies and passions

Linked to our first point, Gen Zers across the world are resolving to spend more time pursuing their hobbies and passions in 2023. Whether it’s reading, crafting, educating themselves or getting outside, this is a generation of creative young adults who want to channel their talents into something that will benefit themselves and others. 

Shot of two young women playing video games on the sofa at home

Notably, the catalyst for this uptake in hobbies is a desire to reduce screentime. Gen Zers are taking to TikTok (ironic, we know) to discuss stepping away from the toxicity of their socials and the importantce of living in the moment – as TikToker Charley Jenni said, “For 2023, I want to get the fuck off my phone and get some hobbies.”. 

But is this focus on mental wellbeing and an uptake in hobbies threatening the return of the ‘that girl/boy’ trend? Put simply, yes. 2023 current goals amongst Gen Zers include ‘make your bed every morning’, ‘don’t go on your phone as much’, ‘go to the gym 3-4 times a week’ and ‘journal twice a day’, all of which mirror the key characteristics of the controverisal ‘that girl/boy’ trend (which was criticised for causing burnout) . It will certainly be interesting to see how Gen Z navigate this and manage these goals in an achievable and healthy way in 2023.

Why is this important for you?

2023 is set to see a shift in priorities for Gen Z, and it’s important for your brand to take notice of this in order to remain on (and ahead of) trend. Keen to expand their horizons, young people will be eager to learn about new hobbies from brands and businesses and understand how they can get involved. Now’s the time for places of education to share what societies/clubs are available to students, for streaming platforms to discuss what programmes Gen Z should be watching/what new artists they should be listening to in 2023, or for sports/athleisure brands to talk about how to get involved in sports and stay fit in a fun and engaging way.

4. Improving their financial literacy

Thanks to the rising cost-of-living, young people’s creativity and their determination to change the future of work, Gen Z are resolving to be more financially savvy as we enter 2023. Whether it’s to live how they want or tp achieve their goals, this smart generation understand the important of financial literacy and many have set it as a target moving forward. 

2023 Voxburner research revealed that 64% of UK Gen Z students have regular savings they can access, alongside a huge 98% of US Gen Zers. Meanwhile, 38% of UK and 55% of US Gen Zers think people should invest in stocks and shares, whilst 21% in the UK have an ISA. Interestingly, 91% of US Gen Zers think people should invest in themselves more, for example, in education and career development, and once again, TikTok is saving the day. Finance creators are taking to the app to share their wisdom on saving and investing, with ‘finfluencers’ such as Gen Zer Aash Thapa posting videos about credit card guidance and trust funds, all as a way of enlightening young viewers.

Why is this important for you?

Finance brands are learning quickly, as we discovered in the Voxburner+ Challenger Brands report, with businesses like EVERYTHING working to make finance sociable and empowering for young people. Young people are taking their education into their own hands, and will favour the brands who help to build their skillsets, financial or otherwise. 

So there you have it – four ‘resolutions’ that are driving this young generation forward in the year ahead and actionable takeaways for your brand to incorporate into marketing strategies. We can’t wait to see what this year will bring for Gen Z!

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